THOSE WACKY BRITISH CALL GIRLS
What's a horny Brit boy to do? Prostitution is legal, but advertising it isn't... not on billboards, not in newspapers or magazines... not nowhere. Ladies intent upon laying back and thinking of English pounds are getting clever in their marketing strategies... they're using business cards... tacked up in phone booths. And they work! But the government considers them to be a blight due to their explicit nature and the possibility that children and tourists might come into contact with them. (You'd think they'd want to extend a warm welcome to visitors, wouldn't ya?) In order to combat this, the country's recently privatized phone company has started blocking the phone numbers. Not fair, according to the working ladies, who have petitioned the Office of Fair Trading to force their lines back open. If they're not able to take calls they may well have to return to the more risky traditional form of advertising: street walking. Maybe that's closer to the vision of British hospitality that the government wants children and tourists to come away with?
PORN FREE PRISONS?
Ok... think real fast. Where are the two places straight men joke about (and fear) shower-taking most? How about the military and prison. Hey, men in uniform and all that, right? You'd think the US government would be hot to get some girlie pix distributed to, you know, sorta take the heat off the new boys. Nope. President Clinton's new Ensign Amendment denied funding to "distribute or make available to a prisoner... information or material (which) is sexually explicit or features nudity." Hardly a surprise after the Military Honor and Decency Act of 1996, which forbids the sale or rental of sexually explicit material at any US military facility. This law was struck down as unconstitutional (duhhh) in January by New York District Court Judge Shira Sheindlin. Court challenges are, of course, continuing. There but for the grace of the court system go our First Amendment rights.
HOOKED ON THE 'NET WORKED FOR ME!
Jonesin' for some IRC? Gettin' the shakes because your favorite smut site got shut down? Dreaming of downloading when you're supposed to be working? Late to appointments because you've got just one more newsgroup to read? According to the latest psycho-babble, you may be an online addict. Dr. Kimberley Young, a psychologist and assistant professor at the University of Pittsburgh in Branford, PA, studied 396 heavy Internet users and concluded that this use can have unsettling psychological side effects. "What is awakened emotionally through the emergence of repressed aspects of the self (is) difficult to submerge back into the unconscious," she warns those who enjoy MUD's (Multi-User Dungeons... interactive fantasy games), cybersex, chats, and other computer delights. Not everyone thinks that labeling an extreme hobby as a disorder is a good idea. Dr. John Grohol, director of the Mental Health Net web site disagrees with Young. "I don't see how they can see the Internet as a disorder but not look at a bookworm who reads 10 hours a day and not say he's a book addict." Maybe if Time Magazine decides books are a threat that will all change.